Water in your home—whether from wind-driven rain or leaky plumbing—can do serious damage to your home. Over time, it can rot your walls, encourage mold growth, and even weaken the joists and beams that support your house. So, does a standard homeowners policy cover water damage? Here’s what you need to know.
Does homeowners insurance cover water damage?
It depends. While long-term water damage usually isn’t covered under a typical home policy— making the immediate reporting of an issue all the more important—coverage depends on the source of the water that caused the damage. Some instances when your homeowners insurance typically covers water damage are:
- Wind-driven rain.
- Roof leaks caused by a sudden event, like a wind storm.
- A leaking or broken pipe.
- A leaking appliance such as a washing machine or a dishwasher. (While your policy may help clean up the mess, it usually won’t cover the cost of repairing the appliance.)
- Water that was used to put out a fire, such as water from your home’s sprinkler system or a firefighter’s hose.
If my home is damaged by water, what will homeowners insurance pay for?
A standard homeowners policy may cover damage to items like permanent carpeting, walls, floors, and paint, but again, it just depends.
If a pipe breaks, you may be covered for water damage to your home, but your policy usually won’t pay to repair or replace the pipe itself.
Will my homeowners insurance cover damage caused by flood waters?
Damage caused by flood water, the result of a naturally occurring event, is usually covered by a flood insurance policy and is separate from your homeowners policy. If you are concerned about flooding, contact your insurance agent to discuss whether you need a flood insurance policy.
When doesn’t homeowners insurance cover water damage?
Standard homeowners insurance typically does not cover water damage from:
- An earthquake, landslide, or mudslide. While these events aren’t covered under a standard home policy, you can purchase earthquake insurance to cover earthquake-related woes, including water damage.
- A natural flood, levee break, or tsunami. To get flood coverage, you can purchase an optional flood policy.
- Negligence. If you fail to repair a plumbing problem, or turn off the heat in your home before embarking on vacation and your pipes freeze and burst, you’re on the hook.
Read your homeowners insurance policy to determine exactly what is and isn’t covered, so if something should happen and your home incurs water damage, you’ll be prepared.
Don’t wait until disaster strikes. If you’re shopping for insurance or have questions about your current policy, contact an award-winning AAA insurance agent. AAA insurance agents can help you find the right coverage for your needs. Call (877) 323-4222 or request a quote online to get started.